Psychochild's Blog

A developer's musings on game development and writing.

17 April, 2011

Weekend Design Challenge: Create a monster

Since two different people mentioned the weekend design challenge in the feedback thread, I figured I’d relent. Since one of the people asking about it is The Ancient Pokémon Gaming Noob, I figured I’d make something for him. (Make sure to shame him if he doesn’t participate!)

The challenge this weekend is to come up with a monster in the style of the Pokémon games. Read on for more info.

The development history of Pokémon is interesting reading for me. The inspiration for the game was Satoshi Tajiri’s interest in bugs as a kid. He saw his favorite stomping places get paved over and lamented the loss of modern children to go dig in the dirt and find bugs like he did. When he saw the Game Boy and its link cable, he Satoshi Tajiri had in mind an image of bugs climbing inside the wire.

With this in mind, your goal is to create a friendly monster (perhaps based on something from you childhood) that you think you’d find within a Pokémon game. Share your creations below in the comments.

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  1. I might have to help judge the competition, as I am probably a bit too close to the Pokemon scene to come up with something I think I might find within a Pokemon game. I spent the summer catching them all. I know too many of them on a first name basis.

    Comment by Wilhelm Arcturus — 17 April, 2011 @ 5:45 PM

  2. As I think back to my childhood I keep recalling elements that are centralized around the theme of change. Ninja Turtles, Transformers, Power Rangers, Animorphs, Dinosaucers… and of course Pokémon. So I’m really at a loss at what to design a monster from that wouldn’t be thematically self referencing. Even going beyond that and asking myself about specific memories keeps me realizing that all my ideas have already been made into Pokémon.

    Stuffed animal? Teddiursa. Video games? Porygon. Gestalting robots? Magneton.

    Fine then. Lemme think of an activity that is generally considered a ‘kid’ thing to do. Ok, how about sand castles.



    If a sandcastle is left on the beach during a full moon, it can turn into Sandadel. At first just a big sand tower called Shorook, it slowly forms more towers and walls around itself. Any detritus washed up to its base will be absorbed and used as decorations. The giant red crystals perched on the highest tower are thought to be from dehydrated Tentacools it finds on the beach. It moves around like a slug, using quicksand to slide around.


    I spent entirely too much time looking up Pokémon origins for this thing. Curse you, Brian!

    Comment by NordicNinja — 17 April, 2011 @ 7:04 PM

  3. This is like asking someone to design a race of elves. Mons are so numerous it’s hard to make one that stands out apart from the game’s setting.

    I’d probably take the myth route (vulpix/ninetales as an example) and make Lunahare, which evolves into Bunnaclipse. Based on the chinese/korean legend of the rabbit in the moon, it’d mostly be a healer, but with a powerful smash attack. The rabbit in the moon is supposed to make the elixir of life for the goddess Chang’e, grinding it with a mortal and pestle, so it would fit.

    Comment by Dblade — 17 April, 2011 @ 8:21 PM

  4. Well it’s something from my childhood that I could both remember and make into a pokemon.

    A grass type pokemon known mostly for eating and sleeping. Strong jaws make it’s bite painful, but it’s unusually placid demeanor makes it a rare problem.

    The protectors of the Gnobbits, though reluctant warriors that are usually as quick to eat and sleep as their devolved form. Still not to be underestimated, as their armor is abnormally strong for it’s size, and it’s dagger abnormally sharp. There is a a colloquial legend around their home near Hill Town that the Baggit was once involved in a great battle with nine other legendary pokemon that ended up saving the world of pokemon as we know it… most reputable researchers consider this to obviously be nothing more than a myth.

    Comment by Sara Pickell — 18 April, 2011 @ 12:08 AM

    meant to have that show up in an img tag, forgot I can’t do it in these comments.

    Comment by Sara Pickell — 18 April, 2011 @ 12:09 AM

  6. Nothing terribly original, but I’d try something based upon two of my fictional favourites, one from childhood and one from later in life.

    Grineko, who evolves into Buspuss.

    Grineko likes to baffle its foes into submission with confounding philosophical discourse.

    Buspuss is not much of a fighter, but is an excellent mode of transport for getting to and from the local training gym.

    The tricky part with capturing Grineko/Buspuss is finding them in the first place, but rumour has it that Pokémon Masters will look for a big toothy grin hanging in mid-air where you’d least expect it.

    Comment by Melmoth — 18 April, 2011 @ 10:43 AM

  7. I’d do something like Escher’s “curl-ups”; curious little armadillo-like critters with human feet. Obvious attacks would be Rollout and Kick, perhaps fitting into a Fighting/Insect type.

    …I’ve stalled on this because I wanted to draw something, but life is busy. :(

    Comment by Tesh — 20 April, 2011 @ 12:41 PM

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